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I think there may be some overlap in this Venn diagram.

Kevin Lewis pointed to a paper with the following bit:

In both Experiment 1 (N = 180 gamblers) and Experiment 2 (N = 202 drinkers) . . .


  1. I can appreciate this topic because I think some of the findings may apply to what I think is a huge problem in many cultures. Emotional Blackmail, a habit that is so repugnant and not nipped in the bud. I see it particularly in highly ideological individuls, and see it in political and partisan circles/cliques. I began to pay close attention to it after reading Robert Kegan’s work The Evolving Self’. I was always puzzled by how super intelligent people behaved so pettily and harping on everyone’s elses so called flaws.

  2. jonathan says:

    It’s kind of ‘worse’, if that’s the word: the key phrase is ‘nostalgic reverie for the pre-addicted self’ may lead to attempts to quit and, duh, this occurred more in people with big, big problems, thus repeating the adage that a junkie needs to hit bottom first. The idea that you could use ‘nostalgic reverie for the pre-addicted self’ seems to be bigger or at least more words for at some point you’re more likely to try to get the monkey off your back. Of course, most people don’t let the monkey on: they pull away after some dabbling, so the idea would be, I guess, that you identify the people with real problems, the ones nearing some form of bottom, and then intervene in some way, which is sort of how this kind of already both works and doesn’t work. I can see a series of flash cards: you as happy child, then an evil monkey, then the evil monkey climbs on your back, etc. Kind of like the ads ‘this is your brain on drugs’ showing a frying pan, which led to a favorite poster, this is your brain on drugs with a side of hash browns, a representation that accurately makes fun of the idea that it’s simple to reach addicts.

    One my kids has been working in the area of identifying places where interventions are possible, but then only in specific areas where, for example, there’s a diagnosis of some medical condition in which treatment is more likely to work if the patient can change behaviors. That becomes an efficiency of care issue and it relies on information exchange that doesn’t currently occur well (or at all). I have no idea how you’d take the idea of ‘nostalgic reverie for the pre-addicted self’ and make it into something useful.

  3. Phil says:

    You’ll only be a smoker when I’m drinking,
    and I’ll only be a drinker when I gamble…
    And since I only gamble when I’m broke,
    Hell, all we’ll ever do is drink and smoke.

    — Loretta Lynch (the music group, not the former AG).

  4. A long, long time ago, I studied people in Gamblers Anonymous. The sample was not large, but it comprised most of the members in the Boston area GA. They were all men back then. Only one or two reported having also been problem drinkers.

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